Summary: The letter to the church at Sardis.
AM Sermon preached at Central Christian Church October 29, 2006
"I See Dead People..." (The letter to the church at Sardis) Rev. 3:1-6
[SERMON SERIES SLIDE…IT WILL AUTOMATICALLY ADVANCE TO TITLE SLIDE THEN A BLANK SLIDE]
All I’ve seen of the movie, The Sixth Sense starring Bruce Willis are the clips they put in the television commercials which aired when the movie first came out about seven years ago. One of those clips seems to have etched itself into my memory. [SLIDE] It’s when a young boy whispers the words, "I see dead people." In a few moments it will be obvious why I used that line for my sermon title.
Now, we’ve been looking at the 7 letters to the 7 churches found in Revelation chapters 2 & 3. And last week I mentioned that the words "I know" appear in every one of them----the words "I know" describe the fact that nothing escapes the searching eye of Jesus---whether you’re talking public or private activity...it makes no difference....Jesus sees it all---He knows what’s going on and what’s not going on among His people. Today as we look into the fifth letter, Christ’s letter to the church at Sardis, we basically find Jesus saying "when I look at you...I see dead people."
Revelation 3:1-6 reads like this............. [SERMON SLIDES]
3:1 "To the angel of the church in Sardis write: These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead.
2 Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of my God.
3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.
4 Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy.
5 He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels.
6 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.
There are five things this morning which I believe God wants me to share with you. Three are for the church as a whole and two are to each of us as individuals. [1ST SERMON POINT SLIDE] First to the church collectively God is saying, "Since reputation and reality don’t always agree---learn from both."
Jesus told the church at Sardis "you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead." Now usually reputations are built upon something more substantial than air. For example--- Professional golfer Tommy Bolt has had the reputation for being the angriest golfer to ever play the game. One of the stories told about him is of a time when he giving a group lesson on how to hit a ball out of a sand trap. Tommy called his 11 year old son over and said to him “Show them what you’ve learned from your father to do when your shot lands in the sand.” At that his son picked up a wedge and threw it as high and as far as he could.